Emigrating from Southern Italy Salvatore Ferragama went to Boston and then California in 1914. He opened a shop in 1923 and began by making movies stars shoes. In 1927 her returned to Florence and set up a shoe shop. However during the great depression he filed for bankruptcy. In 1938 he was in a healthier position to buy Palazzo Spini Feroni a great palace of Florence which is now the companys flagship store and museum.
After Salvatores death in 1960 his wife Wanda took over the running of the business and expanced into scarves etc.